Government says it will review a proposal for additional 28 billion kwacha funds towards the Marka-Bangula railway section project.
The project was awarded to a Chinese contractor CR20 in 2020 at a cost of 68.2 billion kwacha, however there is a proposal to increase the cost to 96 billion kwacha.
Vitumbiko Mumba, Technical and Business Development Manager for CR20 told MIJ Online that additional work scope instituted by government and destructions caused by cyclones including the recent Freddy has raised the cost for the project.
“I must clarify that we are not trying to change the contract but the Ministry has proposed some additional works which are part of the K28 billion. As you can see that side of Mozambique there are five loops line but here the plan was to have two, but now because we want to mirror what happens in Mozambique the ministry proposed we construct five loops.
The second component has come because of natural disasters which were never foreseen. For instance at Nyachirenda initially at the time of tender the river was 70 meters wide, but as we speak now its 220 meters wide, what do we do under that circumstance? It was never envisaged,” explained Mumba
Meanwhile Enock Phale, Chairperson for the parliamentary committee on Transport and Public works described the proposal as justifiable to ensure completion of the works.
According to Phale, the added costs will ensure construction of a resilient infrastructure that responds to harsh weather conditions brought about by climate change.
However, Madalo Nyambose, Principal Secretary responsible for Administration in the Ministry of Transport and Public works said government will review the proposal for the additional costs and make a determination on the same.
“The proposal has been submitted to the ministry and the ministry is looking at it, until we agree on the scope, we would not know whether indeed the additional cost is K28 billion or not,” said Nyambose